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Hobarts Funnies – Adventures in Laser land

Recreating 79th Armoured Division and more in 28mm

The recent release of Warlord's Bolt Action campaign book for the British and Canadian sector of Normandy has increased interest in the specialised Tanks employed by Armoured Royal Engineers within 79th Armoured Division. These tanks, largely based on the British Churchill tank, were converted to fulfil a number of roles to assist in the D Day landings and beyond. Ironically perhaps, the rules for these vehicles actually lie in the first of Warlord's Normandy campaign planned trilogy. Nonetheless their use was primarily associated with the British/Canadian sector and so its no surprise that interest is rising now.

As a former (well you never are former, Once a sapper….) Army reserve (TA to the older among you) Royal Engineer I have long had a passion for anything combat/assault Engineering. About 2 years ago in possibly a hugely optimistic moment I acquired a K40 laser cutter/engraver. This is probably the most common entry level machine out there. Let us be clear it’s not sophisticated, and it does have several ‘issues’ with it. So, while I would not dissuade anyone from getting one, I would strongly recommend that you do your homework first and be prepared for a hobby within a hobby. It is an investment in time, money, and patience and since it is very basic it does need some care before putting it into use. Long and the short of it, I have only started using it ‘in anger’ within the last 6 months. I am however making great progress and am enjoying the fruits of my labour. there are several Facebook groups and online tutorials on You tube that can help any one starting down this path.

So back to the Funnies. High on my list of items to try and make were some if not all the Churchill Armoured Vehicle Royal Engineers (AVRE).

So far, I have managed to create:

a Small Box Girder bridge

and an add on kit to tow the SBG

a Fascine Frame

I’m still working on a Bobbin, which is proving to be a little tricky.

The plan is that these work with the Warlord AVRE kit both the plastic and resin kit. Note that the Plastic AVRE does not have all the modifications on it. They just did the turret and to maintain accuracy the add on pack- AVRE fittings from S and S Models is needed.

In addition I have done a set of Marston mats also know as pierced steel planking which was used in both the European and Pacific theatre for hard standings notably for temporary airfields.

Currently I am working on several buildings linked to the St Nazaire Raid for a friend Adam who has his own You Tube page F .4 FREDDIE and recently had is work on a 28mm scale HMS Campeldown in Wargames Illustrated. The buildings include an Anti-Air and searchlight building, one of the dock gate Winding Houses and the Dock Pumping house which was itself one of the raid targets.

I also have some beach defence positions (Tobruk), some signs for the Normandy area as well as a series of machines, tools and accessories to fit inside the Sarissa (or any other) ruined factories notably the Stalingrad buildings.

Lots more planned – additional buildings that surrounded the Pegasus Bridge, a Freya Radar set to complement the Wurzburg Radar I got from Dave’s Wargames, which since Dave now works for Sarissa and doesn’t have the time to pursue his own work is no longer available.

I intend to make some of these, if not all, available. I'll be adding a selling page here as well as a Facebook 'shop' very shortly, not intending on challenging the might of established MDF terrain suppliers, but I would like to fill a few gaps here and those subjects that grab my fancy.

Swift intro to my laser work, more will follow hopefully soon.

6, 5 Out

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